>TV Round-Up

>Lost: Confirmed Dead
Not quite as fast-paced as last week’s episode, but still a solid entry. This week’s episode was more concerned about giving us glimpses of the four new characters to the show and what their agendas might be more than really providing a lot of answers. And since it’s early enough in the season, that’s not a bad thing.

The flashbacks are shorter–looking at each of the arrivals from the boat. We meet Daniel, Miles, Charlotte and Frank, all of whose journey to the island was motivated by something different. But it appears they all have one common goal–find Benjamin Linus. Interesting that a guy who allegedly was born and grew up on the island would have such a reputation outside of it that someone or a group would come looking for him. Of course, the question is posed in the last few minutes of the episode and left unanswered. And the thing is that no matter what Ben says, we can’t really take it at face value. His most valuable weapon is his mind and his ablity to manipulate people, as we saw again this week. But again, he continues to be a great villian because in his mind, he’s the hero of this show and sees a perfectly valid reason for everything he’s doing and has done. I have to wonder if he’ll be part of the bargain to get the Oceanic Six off the island. Could that be part of the big secret we’ve alluded to?

Meanwhile, it appears this group has some separate goals. Something is clearly up with Danie, Miles communicates with the dead, Charlotte has her own personal agenda against Dharma and Frank was supposed to be flying the plane but was grounded (alcoholic, maybe). Not exactly a crack, elite team to come and rescue our heroes, is it? Of course, I have to wonder what the point of the exhibition really is since the flashback scene with Naomi makes it clear that no one is supposed to be alive from the crash. So, the world thinks our heroes are dead. Why exactly is that? And how many groups are out there that know about the island? Are there two or three or possibly more? Right now, my count is that we’ve got the Dharma group, this group and the Penny Wildman group at the very least. This could get interesting very quickly.

I have a feeling that this episode has a bigger impact on things and is more pivotal to the overall story once we see where some of these storylines are going and are given answers to the questions it raised.

Friday Night Lights: May the Best Man Win
If crap like Jericho can somehow be resurrected to allow it to finish out, then surely a quality show like Friday Night Lights deserves to at least finish the story of what happens to the Dillon Panther this year, if not survive and thrive into a third season. I have a feeling based on Ben Silverman’s remarks last week that I’m going to be unhappy in the near future to lose one of my favorite shows before it’s time. ::sigh:::

The thing that gets me is that this was never intended to be a season or series finale. Too many things left up in the air. Too many plotlines not given the closure they need and the cliffhanger it ended on…man, that is just too interesting not to come back and explore.

Not that this season has been perfect. It’s not been as nirvana-like as season one, but it’s still been incredible. And the last few weeks have been some of the best since last year. Yes, it took a lot to believe that TMU would revoke Smash’s scholarship, but I liked where it took the character. To see a guy who has banked his whole future on football and to watch that crumble before him because of choices he made in the heat of the moment. I did laugh out loud when the Alabama guy told him they play second to no one. It’s the Tennessee fan in me cropping up and it was only funny to me, I’m sure. But it was a good laugh.

Meanwhile, Street is apparently going to become a father. A miracle baby according to his research. Man, I wanted to see Lillah’s reaction to this turn of events, especially given how she’d banked on a future with Street last year. The scene with Street and Eric at Applebee’s as Street looks for wisdom and advice from the coach was one of the best on a show full of them. Interesting also to see that Street goes to Eric for this advice/guidance and not his family or his father. (Of course, he does talk it out with Herc).

And while I’m not really all that compelled by it, I did find the latest wrinkle in the Lillah/Riggins romance to be better done than it has been.

That said, I can’t see that the church radio station is so out of touch they don’t know about the reputation of Tim Riggins. Giving him his own talk show was a plot device and nothing more that doesn’t hold up well if you really think about it.

But despite that and despite some mis-steps this year, if this is the end it has been one of the most enjoyable TV rides I’ve taken in a long time. I am going to be hopeful and optimistic that we’ll see a third season or maybe even a couple of episodes to at least finish the football season and see some of the seniors graduate. But it will be a tragic shame if this is the last we see of this one…

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